January 20, 2012
We were thrilled to unveil our free Wi-Fi service at the end of 2011, but we’re not done launching new, customer-focused projects. By spring 2012, we will join Caltrain in opening the new Santa Clara/University Station and show off the renovations at San Jose – Diridon Station. We will also partner with Amtrak on an e-Ticketing program (print-at-home ticketing) by March 2012.
CCJPA’s Bike Storage Educational Period Begins February 1
You may have heard or read public comments about the Capitol Corridor’s Joint Powers Authority’s (CCJPA) new on board bike storage policy. I want to clarify that on February 1, 2012 we will start our “get acquainted period” to help educate riders who bring bikes on board the importance of proper bike storage. We will begin implementing the new policy several months afterwards in order to give riders time to prepare and acclimate to proper bike storage practices that allow for adequate access and safety.
This policy change is an issue we have been wrestling with as a result of our growing ridership and the corresponding increase in bike usage over the past few years. Quite simply put, the increased use of bicycles in correlation with more riders has outpaced our capacity to safely accommodate so many bikes on board the trains. The CCJPA’s top priority is safety, and in this instance it is not just a viewpoint; it is mandated by compliance with basic operations regulated by federal law and enforced by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA).
During this educational period, for safety reasons and to acquaint bike riders with the upcoming policy, conductors may “tag” those bikes that aren’t properly secured or stowed in such a way that prevents accessing the aisle ways. We’re giving cyclists several months to learn about how to properly stow their bikes in accordance with the upcoming policy.
Upcoming Bike Policy
Several months from now, when the Capitol Corridor’s new bike policy is in place, passengers who board trains with bikes will be required to:
- Secure bicycles to prevent the sudden or uncontrolled movement of bikes in the event of a sudden train stop; and
- Store bicycles so that all passengers (including those in wheelchairs) can safely navigate the train aisle-ways.
Why the Change?
For the past four years we have seen bike ridership surge. More and more riders are bringing bikes on board; however, bicycle storage demand has outpaced our available space and compromised our ability to stay in compliance with FRA regulations. This means that we must implement solutions aimed to keep bikes secured on our trains, while allowing passengers (especially riders who use wheelchairs) to safely navigate through the train.
We’re looking at other solutions to increase bike storage, including working with Caltrans on possible car modifications; however, like buying new rail cars, train car modifications take time. In the meantime, we are obligated to address a very important issue: with more people on the trains, there is an increased demand for bike storage.
We urge bike riders to help us make our trains safe for all passengers. Conductors are our partners in this goal and will soon be trained to manage bike storage on the trains, refer passengers to our website for an explanation of the new bike policy and help identify safe bike storage solutions. On this page you’ll learn details of the reasons for the policy, what we’ve done to address the issue and ways you can help. For example, you may want to consider switching to a folding bike, an option that many transit systems encourage as folding bikes use less storage space.
Again, our goal is to make travel on the Capitol Corridor a safe, positive experience for all.